will then move in three columns, if roads can be found to move on, and either have Vicksburg or Haynes' Bluff to-morrow night.
The enemy have been so terribly beaten yesterday and to-day that I cannot believe that a stand will be made unless the troops are relying on Johnston's arriving with large re-enforcements, nor that Johnston would attempt to re-enforce with anything at his command if he was at all aware of the present condition of things.
U. S. GRANT,
EDWARDS STATION, MISS., May 17, 1863-8 a. m.
Major General WILLIAM T. SHERMAN,
Commanding Fifteenth Army Corps:
McClernand has engaged the enemy at their works, about 1 mile east of the railroad bridge. I have ordered the pontoon train with Blair's DIVISION to go to Bridgeport. I will endeavor to hold the enemy where he is, to give you time to cross the river, if it can be effected.
The moment the enemy begins to give way, I will endeavor to follow him so closely that he will not be able to destroy the bridge. Let me hear from you the hour you expect to arrive at Bridgeport.
U. S. GRANT,
BRIDGEPORT, May 17, 1863. -2 p. m.
DEAR SIR: Blair's and Steele's DIVISIONS are here. I found a picket on the other side. Threw a few shells, and the picket of 1 lieutenant and 10 men surrendered. I now have a regiment across, and the pontoons ought to be done in a couple of hours. I expect to be on the high lands back of Vicksburg by night. One of Tuttle's brigades is broken down by the march; will be left at this bridge. You may count on my being across in three hours. Shall I push into the city, or secure a point on the ridge?
W. T. SHERMAN,
HDQRS. Fifteenth ARMY CORPS,
Bridgeport, MISS., May 17, 1863.
This corps will move on the road to Vicksburg at early dawn to-morrow, the SECOND DIVISION in the advance, followed by the First and THIRD DIVISIONS in the order named.
The artillery of the THIRD DIVISION will cross the river before dawn. The SECOND Brigade, THIRD DIVISION, Brigadier-General Mower commanding will remain on the east bank of the river until the transportation of the corps shall have been passed over under the direction of the chief quartermaster, and will then cross the bridge and await orders from the general commanding.
The brigade of General Ewint will cross in rear of General Tuttle's DIVISION, and at the first halt for rest will push forward and take its place in the column.
All prisoners of war and soldiers left behind from sickness or other cause will be subject to the command of General Mower.
By order of Major General W. T. Sherman.
R. M. SAWYER,